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? what about senate minority leader mitch mcconnell? >> well, the thing at this point and i'm told by sources is that there are no negotiations going on between senator mitch mcconnell, the republican leader in the senate, and senator majority leader harry reid in hawaii for the funeral of daniel inouye and is now back to washington. it could come down to the senate doing something. senator mcconnell might allow this bill i mentioned that i already passed in july, was a threshold for tax hikes, being at the $250,000 level, he may allow democrats to say, the house has to take this, or if there is some sort of vote on another measure, while mitch mcconnell would be unlikely to support it, perhaps he might let some of his republican senators do that, now, this is sort of thinking, coming from democrats, this is not something that mitch mcconnell at this point is planning to do, and it's very much unclear. the fact is, it doesn't just matter what the senate does, don, the house would have to pass something. and whatever were to come out of the senate at this point would require not jus
to the plate and kick start negotiations? i mean, what about senate minority leader mitch mcconnell? >> well, the thing at this point -- and i'm told by sources -- is that there really are no negotiations going on between senator mitch mcconnell, the republican leader in the senate and senate majority leader harry reid who is actually in hawaii today for the funeral of daniel inouye and is on his way back to washington. it would really come down to the senate doing something. the way democrats see it, there's a possibility that senator mcconnell might allow this bill that i mentioned that already passed in july with the threshold for tax hikes being at the $250,000 level, that he might sort of allow democrats to say okay, the house has to take this or if there is some sort of vote on another measure that while mitch mcconnell would be unlikely to personally support it, perhaps he might let some of his republican senators do that. now, this is sort of thinking coming from democrats. this is not something that mitch mcconnell at this point is planning to do, and it's very much unclear. the fac
. i think the key player is mitch mcconnell to watch. we're getting potentially more information about what is happening next. our capitol hill producer deidre walsh was there when some of the leaders returned and she spoke with nancy pelosi who said this meeting was constructive and candid. here's what is especially interesting. nancy pelosi told reporters that the president led a meeting that ended with senators reid and mcconnell trying to work something out between the two of them. now it seems like we've gone from a process that was president obama and speaker boehner and then today to five leaders back to two. and those two, for the moment, seem to be senator reid and senator mccon until. also, i had a source in senator mcconnell's office who said we should be getting a statement from the republican leader of the senate any time now. so that statement will tell us a lot, candy. >> it will. but we also know that even though it's in the senate hands now which is basically where speaker boehner tossed it when he couldn't get his plan b passed by his own caucus, it doesn't mean that
reid to cobble together the deal. minority leader mitch mcconnell to ensure no republicans block the bill. for house speaker john boehner to agree to bring it to a vote on the house floor, and leader nancy pelosi to produce the huge number of democrats needed to pass it. but if that plan falls through -- >> then i will urge senator reid to bring to the floor a basic package for an up or down vote. >> the president's basic package has much more for democrats to like. so don't expect that to get very far. but all sides now agree the senate must first pass a bill before the house makes any kind of move. so all eyes will be on mitch mcconnell and harry reid and their negotiators holed up on capitol hill. the senate comes back into session at 1:00 on sunday. >> jessica yellin, thanks. >>> and with the pressure now squarely on the senate to fix the fiscal cliff, they will lead the talks this weekend. a period of time reid calls, quote, very important, mcconnell says he's hopeful both sides will have a plan to present to their respective members as early as tomorrow. and other republica
. take a look at mitch mcconnell and harry reid just this afternoon. >> you'll excuse me if i'm a little frustrated at the situation. >> republican leader finds himself frustrated. >> i say i'm frustrated because we have been asking the president and the democrats to work with us. >> he complains i have not delivered the votes to pass the solution to the fiscal cliff. he's in error. >> i told the president i would be happy to look at whatever he opposes. >> he's upset because, quote, the phone never rang. >> as i said, this is a conversation we should have had months ago. >> we have nobody to work with, compromise. >> republicans aren't about to write a blank check. >> we can't negotiate with ourselves. that's all we're doing. >> we don't have many days left. >> we're in the same situation we have been in for a long time. >> as you can see, senate is back in session today. the house plans to be back on sunday. more now on the breaking news. senior congressional correspondent dana bash joins us now from capitol hill. jessica yellen on the north lawn tonight. dana, i'll start with you. you
, but this meeting tomorrow is absolutely going to be crucial. and what the senate republican leader mitch mcconnell who you just heard from there, what he's saying he hopes to get from the president is a more detailed explanation of what he has been saying publicly, which is that he thinks he just wants the senate to pass the stop gap measure to keep tax cuts where they are for 98% of americans, which he campaigned on over and over again in the last election, in the hopes that enough republicans will come onboard and then this could possibly get through the house. >> jessica, is there cause then for optimism here or is this meeting really just for show? >> reporter: randi, as dana pointed out, at this meeting they could work out the details of this scaled down proposal. which could be a final agreement. for example, republicans have been calling for these details, and the kind of thing they would like to know is if, just one example, if unemployment insurance is going to be extended, how would that be paid for? these are the sort of things that could be worked out tomorrow. senate republicans, the
of legislation would look like and reports they got from republicans and the president told mitch mcconnell that he would get the details. that's where from the perspective of republicans where things stand. the president publicly said before he left for his vacation in hawaii since everything else was deadlocked, despite everybody's efforts, because of that what he wants to happen is for the very least for congress to pass a tax cut extension for 98% of americans. his plan which he campaigned on for five years. mitch mcconnell spoke to the president as did the other leaders before the president left hawaii. what mcconnell aide is still saying is that the impression he got is that the white house would or at least some democrat whether it's the white house or harry reid's office would provide the details of what that legislation would look like. they said with tongue firmly in cheek, we checked in a process conference and it can't get through the senate. we need to see if anything will get done and at the same time jessica is hearing from white house sources, i am hearing for democratic sou
of six attending. vice president biden, harry reid, house minority leader nancy pelosi, mitch mcconnell and john boehner representing the republicans. brianna keilar is live from washington. is anybody optimistic that a deal could be done today around a table? >> i will tell you the optimism is sort of sinking. senate majority leader harry reid said he doesn't see how it can get done by january 1st. we heard from president obama before he left from his vacation that he was optimistic. logistically the white house will tell you it's possible. when you listen to what you're hearing some of these congressional leaders say, there's a lot of posturing laying blame to the other side if we do go over the cliff. take a listen. >> republicans are not about to write a blank check for anything senate democrats put forward because we find ourselves at the edge of the cliff. >> we are here in washington working while the members of the house of representatives are out watching movies, watching their kids play soccer, basketball, doing all kinds of things. they should be here. >> now, house speaker j
mitch mcconnell, house speaker john boehner and house democratic leader nancy pelosi met at the white house yesterday afternoon with the president and vice president. here's where things stand right now. the senate leaders are meeting aiming to avoid tax hikes. and they may vote on a deal sunday or perhaps on monday. jessica yellin is our chief white house correspondent. lisa day jar dayne is on capitol hill. the president used his bully pulpit to reinforce the idea that senators need to get busy. so let's listen. >> the american people are watching what we do here. obviously, their patience is already thin. this is deja vu all over again. america wonders why it is that in this town for some reason, you can't get stuff done in an organized timetable, why everything always has to wait till the last minute. we're now at the last minute. and the american people are not going to have any patience for a politically self-inflicted wound to our economy. not right now. >> so jessica, you were in the room for the president's remarks. on a scale of 1 to 10, let's measure the anger perhaps that
, was senator mitch mcconnell and here we have the majority leader in the senate, harry reid. let's listen in for a second. >> the house has reported by the press and we all know, one of the plans didn't have a name, it wasn't plan b. i don't know which plan it was because they've had a number over there. but this plan was to show the american people that the $250,000 ceiling on raising taxes wouldn't pass in the house. why didn't they have that vote? because it would have passed. they wanted to kill it. the speaker wanted to show everybody that it wouldn't pass the house. but he couldn't bring it up for vote because it wouldn't pass. republicans -- a myriad of republicans think it's the fair thing to do and of course every democrat would vote for that. the republican leader finds himself frustrated that the president has called on him to help address the fiscal cliff. he's upset because, quote, the phone never rang. he complains that i have not passed the resolution to pass the fiscal cliff but he's in error. we all know that in july of this year we passed in the senate the relief that wo
then what we've been hearing from republicans, particularly mitch mcconnell's office is we can't talk about whether we can pass anything until we actually see the legislation. so our understanding from these sources who are familiar with the call and familiar with the process is that the president will put the plan in legislate lative language. what is the plan? the president's tax plan he campaigned on for five years which is to let the tax plan expire for households making less than $250,000. he would add unemployment insurance. the thinking here is he would potentially also add extending the estate tax cut. the estate tax has been at a relatively low level. it expires also at the ipd of the year. but, you know, this is all you know, to'ing and fro'ing right now to see if it's possible to pass anything to keep most americans' taxes where they are before the end of the year when everybody's tax go up. >> we heard from senator reid earlier today. they were dealing, in his words, with a dictatorship. are we expected to hear from him or any of the players from the hill in terms of trying to m
of that stopgap, scaled down version. in fact, mitch mcconnell himself said in the hallway, just moments ago, that he does expect to go to the white house, as jessica just alluded to. he expects to do that tomorrow. they haven't gotten a formal invitation tomorrow. there's no time set for this meeting tomorrow, but mitch mcconnell says he does expect to go. and so that really does speak to the next move, tomorrow. >> well, that is good news. that is good news, senator mcconnell going to the white house tomorrow, hopefully. but i'm going to ask you about the house of representatives, dana. right now they've been called back to washington, not until sunday, december 30th. now, 48 hours before the fiscal cliff goes over, is that really enough time to get legislation passed, if there's a real deal on the table? >> reporter: is it enough time? probably. if there's really something that is going to pass the senate, and this is a big if, as jessica said, the oddsmakers are definitely seeing the fiscal cliff happening, us going over the fiscal cliff, but if senate does pass something, that would be
on a bipartisan deal ostensibly with his republican adversary mitch mcconnell. >> -- engaged in discussions, the majority leader and myself and the white house, in the hopes that we can come forward as early as sunday and have a recommendation that i can make to my conference and the majority leader can make to his conference. >> well, if the senate manages to reach a compromise, the hope is that the house would follow. that's option one. the green one. option two is less certain. president obama reportedly challenged congressional leaders from both parties on friday to come up with a deal better than the one he proposed. the center piece of which is that the top marginal tax rate will increase for those earning $250,000 or more from 35% to 39.6%. that's only on the amount earned above that threshold. obama has told congress either they come up with something better or put his proposal to a vote. he's betting even those who hate the idea of a tax increase on the rich will hate causing america to go over the fiscal cliff even more. okay. option three. that's the red box. that's one where ame
and harry reid. republicans mitch mcconnell and john boehner. those four members of congress are expected to make the drive from the capital, which you see on the right, down pennsylvania avenue, to the white house, there on the left. and we expect them to enter through a side door on the west side of the mansion. that's the entrance right there. and they'll meet with the president. in the oval office. beginning, we're told, at 3:00 p.m., less than one hour from now. and just four days ahead of the so-called fiscal cliff. so a very big moment in the nation's capital. and to walk us through what might happen we turn to jessica yellin, a chief white house correspondent. jessica, we said up front, it is a long shot, give us a best case scenario. >> reporter: the best case scenario would be that all the leaders walk out of this meeting and say they have a deal. the two senators say they can bring it to a vote, and none of their members will filibuster it. house speaker john boehner says he will bring it to the house floor for a vote before new year's eve and house minority leader nancy pelosi
we've got to get this done. >> senate minority leader mitch mcconnell also spoke after their meeting expressing home that the weekend would bring a deal. >> we are engaged in discussions, the majority leader and myself and the white house in the hopes that we can come forward as early as sunday and have a recommendation i can make to my conference and the majority leader can make to his conference. and we'll be working hard to try to see if we can get there in the next 24 hours. i'm hopeful and optimistic. >> we're watching that story closely. >>> protesters demanding justice for the young woman who has died now after she was brutally beaten and gang raped on a bus in new delhi earlier this month. our cnn reporters on the ground tell us today's demonstrations have been peaceful. police did tighten security. six suspects in custody including a minor and the bus driver and they're now facing
at this point is not in discussion with not only speaker john boehner but the senate minority leader, mitch mcconnell and perhaps because of that, you have some of that pessimism of senator liberman being shared by republicans. >> when i listen to the president, i think the president is eager to go over the cliff for political purposes and sees a political victory at the bottom of the cliff. gets additional tax revenue, gets to cut the military which democrats have been calling for for years and blame republicans for it. >> now, all eyes are now on the senate, which will reconvene on thursday. seen as likely that president obama will head back to washington from hawaii here. senate minority leader harry reid has the task of trying to conjure up something that might be able to pass the house in addition to the senate publicly. the white house is saying they want tax rates to remain in effect for those making up to $250,000 per year, but it's unclear if that's something. very unclear, very unquestioned that house republicans could swallow that. we're hearing aing you significant possibility we go over
and schedule a vote. so the pressure is on for senator majority leader harry reid, and mitch mcconnell, be sure no republicans block the bill. for house speaker john boehner to agree to bring it to a vote on the house floor and leader nancy pelosi to predict a huge number of democrats needed to pass it. but if that plan falling through -- >> then i will urge senator reid to bring to the floor a basic package for an up or down vote. >> reporter: the president's basic package has much more for democrats to like. so don't expect that to get very far, but all sides now agree the senate must first pass a bill before the house makes any kind of move. so all eyes will be on mitch mcconnell and harry reid and their negotiatorsoled up on capitol hill. the senate comes back into session at 1:00 on sunday. christi, alison? >>> and the cliffhanger continues. jessica yellin, thanks. >>> and january 1st is the deadline to make a deal on the fiscal cliff. for some states, it's a day that a series of new laws are going to take effect. let me get you clued in here. in california, talking more than 800 new laws,
leads are harry reid on mitch mcconnell to work out a deal on then present it to the house. he also laid out a scaled down mini deal if they are can't manage it. >> if we don't see an agreement between the two leaders in the senate, i expect a bill to go on the floor, i asked senator reid to do this, put a bill on the floor that makes sure that taxes on middle class families don't go up, that unemployment is still available for 2 million people on that lays the groundwork for additional deficit reduction on economic growth steps that we can take in the new year but let's not miss this deadline. >> as for the two senate leaders, they spoke shortly after the meeting on sounded a bit more hopeful than the president. >> i think it was a very positive meeting. there was not a lot of hilarity in the meeting. everyone knows how important it is. it's a very serious meeting on it took an extended period of time, as you all know waiting for us. >> mr. president, i would just add -- i share the view of the majority leader, we had a good meeting down at the white house. we are engaged in discussion,
there's going to need to be some buy-in from the senate minority leader, republican mitch mcconnell. so that's where things stand. and president obama is actually hopeful that something could still be pulled off. listen. >> nobody can get 100% of what they want. and this is not simply a contest between parties in terms of who looks good and who doesn't. call me a hopeless optimist. but i actually still think we can get it done. >> reporter: now, of course, if the senate were to pass something and reconvene on december 27th, don, it would also then need to pass the house. but the expectation is that whatever would be worked out in the senate, if it is, would pass the house hopefully not just with republican support, but it would need democratic support, as well. and just to be clear, the thing that president obama and speaker boehner were working towards was a much bigger package, trying to deal with deficit reduction that would have dealt with these tax hikes, spending cuts, trying to work out a plan for entitlement reform and tax reform. what's now being worked out is to avert those ta
's sort of con joeling mitch mcconnell to agree to those actions on those parts. if the president can get that done, we don't have much time left for the rest of the pieces to fall into place. >> jessica, i'm sure you saw harry reid on the floor there today really going after speaker boehner, which is just more and more of the blame game. can anything get done when all they are doing is fighting and blaming each other? >> for the longest time, we thought this is a lot for the last few weeks of public posturing. behind the scenes, they must have a secret deal worked out, but in the end they will come out with a deal to get this done before new year's. but it hasn't turned out that way, has it? so it's not surprising there's an enormous amount of partisanship given each side wants to win the public relations war in @ event the nation does go over the cliff. >> let's hope for the best. jessica yellin. happy holidays. come to new york. thanks. >>> your top stories, heated political differences are common, but a dispute in albuquerque? that one nearly ended in gun violence. >> drop the gun! >>
a smaller measure with senate democrats who would need to buy in. the senate minority leader mitch mcconnell to avoid the tax hikes. i think part of this is the president saying to house republicans, you have to come around and in way when boehner said, don, that the ball is in the court of the democrats, it's true. the republicans have given up their role as their primary negotiators in this. to this point, they are trying work out a smaller bill, and president obama, you can tell, he is holding out hope that it can work. >> nobody can get 100% of what they want. and this is not simply a contest between parties in terms of who looks good and who doesn't. call me a hopeless optimist? i still think we can get it done. >> and i think, don, that with congress going home, the president's other option was to stay in washington while no one was there. we saw some of the vacation last year disrupted for the president's late departure, so there was that desire to come out here. but i also think that some at the white house think that allowing congress to go home may also allow them to get somewhat o
that unlikely that senate minority leader mitch mcconnell would want to negotiating? that he doesn't feel will be able to also pass the house, which would require the support of some house republicans and that's part of the reason why this is such a difficult task and it has really been thrown into question whether or not the country is going over the fiscal cliff. the senate will reconvene, it is on xenlg actual reconvene september 27th that is on thursday. and i think the expectation is that at some point, president obama would go back to washington, especially if there's this possibility that the country goes off of the fiscal cliff. he wouldn't obviously want to be here in hawaii when that happens, miguel. >> just sounds like it is a very complicated game of chicken. the president is attending a very somber event today. the body of hawaii senator daniel inouye is being interred. what can you say about the ceremony? >> reporter: this is the national cemetery of the pacific, referred here in honolulu as the punch bowl. this is a cemetery where a number of people who daniel inouye would
this morning the. that is what the weather was like as mitch mcconnell came to work in trying to reach a deal. if you cannot forge a deal with democrats, here is what is at stake. let's look first of all at what is involved in talks. at the top of the list, tax rates, if we go over the fiscal cliff, tax rates will go up 9-33% for most all americans. now, that would also mean havoc for payroll companies and the irs that have to struggle how to handle withholding starting on january 1st and unemployment benefits. those ran out today. so that is something that republicans and democrats we understand are talking about right now. so, what else is at stake in the fiscal cliff? let's look at the other issues, things that we are not sure will be in a deal that comes out this week. at the top of the list, government spending cuts that is 8-10% in cuts to every federal agency. and a pay cut for medicare doctors of 27% that would hit after january 1st and finally, don, there's a slew of other tax hikes. the minimum tax and the estate tax. that is everything that would hit average americans. the fiscal c
leader in the senate, it's up to you to fix this. what is senator reid's next move should mitch mcconnell get into this? how does this play out? >> candy, in the aftermath of house republicans rejecting speaker boehner's so-called plan b, it's the first time i feel it's more likely that will go over the cliff than not. if we allow that to happen, it will be the most colossal consequenceal act of congressional irresponsibility in a long time. maybe ever in american history, because of the impact it will have on almost every american. taxes up, programs cut probably sending us back into a recession. the ball is now clearly with the senate. senator reid and senator mcconnell have the ability to put this together again and pass something. it won't be a big, grand bargain to take care of the total debt, but they can do some things that will avoid the worst consequences going over the fiscal cliff. i've talked to a lot of republican colleagues in the senate who are favorably incl e inclined toward the idea it to protect the middle class from the tax cuts. let's raise taxes on people over 250,0
that. the hope for any deal before january 1st is that somehow minority leader mitch mcconnell could convince his troops, convince the republicans not to block it with a filibuster. each individual senator makes up their own mind, each senator has the right to stage a filibuster. so that's not something he can control entirely. a bigger issue, though, i have to edadmit, when you look at senator mcconnell and why he's so important right now is that he needs to bring some republicans on board this deal for a couple reasons. first, they need those republican votes to get anything through the senate. and then second of all, speaker boehner needs some cover, he needs some way to convince republicans in the house that they should pass this deal. conservatives are putting pressure on all sides and republicans in the house want to be to say conservativings in the senate supported this. i can too for the good of the country even though i don't like it. these are the dynamics in play. a lot of politics, a lot at stake. and this is why all focus is on senator mcconnell because he can bring so m
other lawmakers to like jump in and try to -- you mentioned harry reid. what about mitch mcconnell or someone, can we expect anybody else to do something besides the house speaker and the president? >> reporter: well, at this point i think the ball is really out of the court of president obama and house speaker john boehner. obviously something would have to get through the house, but we're definitely focusing on the senate. i will tell you talking to sources that it doesn't even appear that senate majority leader reid and senate minority leader mcconnell are talking. the discussions aren't under way yet. you talk to sources on the hill and you get the sense that reid is waiting for mcconnell to chime in and mcconnell is waiting for reid to chime in. so this is a bit of a standoff right now and we are waiting to see who is going to blink. that's really the question, who is going to blink first and the fact is we just don't know. >> brianna keilar, thank you very much. >>> first, now they were only trying to buy bread and now over 100 people are dead after a bakery is bombed by war
on the democratic side. house speaker john boehner, mitch mcconnell representing the republicans. brianna keilar live from washington. what do we expect to happen today? any new offers from the president or house speaker? >> we don't know. right now, all eyes on the senate to see what senate majority leader harry reid can cobble together to get some republican support. technically, it's still possible to come to an agreement. that said, politically is a different story, and the prospects for coming to a deal are starting to dim. right now, we're hearing a whole lot of the blame game. a lot of public posturing from both sides as they prepare for the possibility of going over the cliff. let's listen to harry reid. >> we are here in washington working while members of the house of representatives are out watching movies and watching their kids play soccer and basketball and doing all kinds of things. they should be here. >> now, the speaker of the house, john boehner, sort of retorting to reid, ali. in a conference call he said the leaders should do more -- or pardon me. less talking and more legis
're shifting negotiation tactics now to a group of two. two senators, mitch mcconnell and harry reid, the two party leaders in the senate, are going to be trying to find a way to get a deal today. we know their staff is talking. we don't expect actually any necessary meetings between those two leaders right away today. we think that their chiefs of staff are going to be on the phone, via e-mail. this reported from our producer, ted barrett. perhaps tonight they'll see if the leaders can sit down and get together something to present to their various caucuses. now as i said, it was silent until yesterday. then we heard many people speaking. again, we heard from president obama this morning talking about how important it is to try and get a deal done this week. >> you meet your deadlines, your responsibilities every single day. the folks you sent here to serve should do the same. we cannot let washington politics get in the way of america's progress. we've got to do what it takes to protect the middle class, grow this economy, and move our country forward. >> that was the president's weekly add
in this to the senate minority leader mitch mcconnell. if perhaps he could get on board with something with democrats in the senate to move along, presumably that might be able to be pushed through the house. the house republicans at least some of them, would have to vote on that in order to pass it so they have some i guess influence in that regard, but really they've given away a lot of their -- almost all of their influence on what this package can ultimately look like. >> oh, dear, i'm not smelling a lot of hope. aloha. thank you very much, brianna keilar. >>> it's a wintry mess for much of the country today as americans gear up for holiday travel. this midwest blizzard is now ripping across the northeast. most of the problems are from high winds as high as 40 miles per hour. aaa predicts some 93 million americans will travel between now and new year's. but if the roads look anything like this, you may want to stay home. >>> alexander steele is in the cnn weather center. what's the latest on the storm? >> this holiday has been fraught with airport delays. today is no different. washington, d.c. a
24 hours would be very important as he and mitch mcconnell put together something that would pass both of their caucuses. and then of course it would have to go to the house. the majority leader harry reid said he's readying a bill for a vote on monday to prevent a tax hike on incomes up to $250,000. senator reid said his bill will include unemployment benefits, a continuation of those. that would be sort of the plan b for democrats simply because what they would rather do is get a bill with senator reid working in conjunction with senator mcconnell. senator reid said he's awaiting good faith proposals from the republicans. president obama said after the meeting that he is modestly optimistic a deal can be reached, but as you can hear from senator reid, the president asked that if a deal between republicans and democrats cannot be reached, then the president wants just an up or down vote on what he wants, which is quite simply no income tax rates going up for people making $250,000 and under. and an extension of long-term unemployment benefits. and that's of course for the long-te
minority leader, mitch mcconnell. and so the thought is, obviously, that they may vote on something that the senate has to take up, but it's something that ultimately has to go through the house and would take democratic votes as well and maybe they won't get as much as they want. certainly their opportunity to get some entitlement and tax reform is gone for the moment, miguel. >> absolutely extraordinary situation. thank you very much. try to enjoy hawaii and aloha to you. >> reporter: aloha. [ bells tolling ] >> yesterday much of the country paused to remember the newtown shooting victims. church bells rang out exactly one week after the tragedy began. flags remained at half-staff. even many websites went dark. and people all over the country observed a moment of silence for the 20 children and 6 teachers and administrators. today there's a walk for peace in newtown where three more children will be laid to rest. aina grace marquez. greene, who loved to sing. josephine grace gay, who had just celebrated her 7th birthday, and emilie alice parker, who was bright, creative, and very
for democratic leader harry reid and republican leader mitch mcconnell are trading proposals. even if they agree, they still need the support of the caucuses. that's no sure thing. then the plan needs to pass the house too. and speaker john boehner has shown he can't control how his caucus votes. if the senate fails to act, president obama wants it to consider a much smaller plan, one that at least would stop middle class tax hikes, at least. but republicans could block a vote on that. did you get all that? >>> by now, you're probably asking how did we get in this mess? cnn's ali velshi breaks it down for us. >> now we have passed a bold package of tax relief for america's families and businesses. >> reporter: it starts more than a decade ago, when then president george w. bush initiated a series of tax cuts for all americans. but it's a deal with a devil. the cuts, which are politically expedient but costly to government, expire in ten years' time. >> both houses of congress have now passed a package of tax relief that will protect the middle class. >> reporter: when it came time for the cuts t
and minority leader mitch mcconnell. that is happening this afternoon. jessica yellin is there. jess, what do we know about the president's plan to get everybody in the same room? do we think there's going to be something that comes out of this? >> reporter: well, this is one of those cases where we really are going to have to wait and see, and all the parties involved are also going in with a big question mark. the idea is the expectation by many of the participants in the meeting is that they hope that they will be able to discuss more details about a scaled-down fiscal cliff plan. and maybe that could lead to some sort of agreement ideally for all parties in which all the senators say that they will not filibuster it, and it can go to a vote. and then speaker boehner could, in theory, agree to bring it to a vote on the house floor after the house comes back on sunday. and then we would get all of this behind us before new year's eve. how likely does that sound? not so likely. >> you and i are both kind of laughing about that one. so the stumbling block, of course, over raising taxes on the
and mitch mcconnell have been radio silent on negotiations. joining me is will kain and roland martin, a political analyst and columnist. welcome to you both. >> good to see you. >> good to see you. i'm just so sad we have to talk about the fiscal cliff. let's start with you, roland. harry reid comes out and says the house isn't in session. the president is back. the house is going nowhere. john boehner is doing a terrible job and we'll likely go off the cliff because of the republicans. >> it's interesting. this morning i talked to congressman e moon yule cleaver and part of the issue deals with the house rules. they have to have 48-hours notice to come back to washington, d.c. republicans also have a rule -- >> like there are phones. >> but again, the problem is the house rule that they must wait 72 hours to act on legislation. they can always suspend that rule, frankly change it for this particular purpose. that's part of the problem. they waited so long. this is also one of the reasons why congress should have kept their butt in washington, d.c. to get this problem solved because
, mitch mcconnell have made it clear, you want $1 trillion of more debt ceiling, because that's what the president is running, $1 trillion more debts, you have to cut it at the same time. they won it a year ago. they'll win it in the future. this is a long fight. it's four years of a fight. it's not one week of a fight. to your earlier question, does the president want to take us over the cliff? i think now he does. the reason is he needs an excuse for the next four years of failure. blaming it on bush doesn't work very much. the regulations and spending he's put on the economy for the next four years is going to put us in recession regardless of the fiscal cliff. >> to be fair, i'm told there are a number of republicans, especially in the house, who want to go over the cliff for the reason i explained, that they'd much rather vote for a tax cut than a tax increase because they don't want to break your pledge. grover, thank you very much. appreciate it. >> no one should break their pledge. >> merry christmas. thank you, grover. >> merry christmas to you. >> ahead on "starting point,"
solution. >> reporter: senate republican leader mitch mcconnell said the next move needs to come from the president. >> he's the only one who can do it. this isn't john boehner's problem to solve. >> reporter: without a deal, steep tax hikes and massive government spending cuts are set to trigger after january 1. cnn, washington. >>> if there is a new ban on assault weapons, could that mean current gun owners would have to give their guns up? the answer may surprise you. th. i have a cold, and i took nyquil, but i'm still "stubbed" up. [ male announcer ] truth is, nyquil doesn't unstuff your nose. what? [ male announcer ] it doesn't have a decongestant. no way. [ male announcer ] sorry. alka-seltzer plus fights your worst cold symptoms plus has a fast acting decongestant to relieve your stuffy nose. [ sighs ] thanks! [ male announcer ] you're welcome. that's the cold truth! [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus. ♪ oh what a relief it is! ♪ [ male announcer ] to learn more about the cold truth and save $1 visit alka-seltzer on facebook. >>> many americans from the president on down
widespread support from mitch mcconnell and the leadership, but just a few who are maybe retiring, or leaving the senate. >> reporter: that's a great question. first and foremost they would have to be able to swallow the idea that they will effectively vote to raise taxes on the top 2% of americans which most republicans said they do not want to do because they think it is bad for the economy. to answer your question, it is probably the biggest sweetener for republicans and seen some moderate democrats by the way is the estate tax. the estate tax is in place right now at a relatively low threshold. it would go up big time at the end of the year. and that is something that is very important to a lot of republicans. that could be a sweetener. i think probably the best argument the democrats have for some of those republicans is that they don't want to be in the way or they don't want to be responsible in any way for every american's taxes going up, including most importantly the people who really, really need that money, people who just aren't the wealthiest in this country. >> dana bash, six d
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